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“An Allegory of Representation”: Byron Otis on Gabriel Metsu’s View into a Hall with a Jester, a Boy, and his Dog

Gabriel Metsu’s painting View into a Hall with a Jester, a Boy, and his Dog from 1667 subtly upends expectations of Dutch genre painting from this period. Rather than depicting a placid scene of everyday life, Metsu reflexively calls attention to the constructed nature of this illusionistic scene and implicates the viewer within the cast of characters. 

TRANSCRIPT

Recorded on August 18, 2021.

Byron Otis

Byron Otis is a second-year student in the Williams Graduate Program in the History of Art and a curatorial intern at the Clark Art Institute. He is interested broadly in northern European early modern art and is currently researching the visual development of racial thinking at the Prague court of Rudolf II.